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Old 02-25-2014   #1
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Default Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

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The Clowney Conundrum
Jadeveon Clowney perhaps has more talent than the best pure pass-rusher in NFL history, Lawrence Taylor. So why isn't the South Carolina star a No. 1 pick lock? A look into the 2014 draft's biggest mystery, plus a reader mailbag
By
Peter King

I don’t have the answer on Jadeveon Clowney, who looked like such a can’t-miss prospect Monday at the NFL Scouting Combine. No one does.

Clowney had one sack in his last 33 college quarters of football. That just confounds me. It bothers me, and how can GM Rick Smith and coach Bill O’Brien, sitting in Houston with the top pick in the draft in Houston, watch the performance they watched in Indianapolis, with Clowney showing ridiculous speed and athleticism for such a big man, and not wonder, “Did this man really get one sack in the last 600 or so snaps of his college life? What is wrong with this picture?” On the one hand, Smith and O’Brien have to think of Clowney and J.J. Watt tormenting the AFC South for the next six to eight years. On the other, they have zero questions about Watt’s desire, and probably a hundred about Clowney’s.

I covered Lawrence Taylor for four seasons of his New Jersey prime, 1985 through 1988. He’s the best pure pass-rusher I’ve ever seen. Clowney is two inches taller and 23 pounds heavier than Taylor was, plays stronger from the look of the tape, and Clowney’s 40-yard-dash time basically matches Taylor’s—4.53 seconds.

Stats aren’t everything. And sacks are overrated. But Clowney had one sack and three passes defensed in his last eight games. He had nagging injuries, and South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier has openly questioned Clowney’s work ethic. People have been quick to pooh-pooh Spurrier’s criticism, because Spurrier failed so spectacularly as the Washington coach when he had his NFL chance. But Spurrier was around Clowney every day. You weren’t. I wasn’t. Does he have an axe to grind? I suppose he might, but why would he? No, I take Spurrier’s comments seriously, and so should Clowney. And so should the teams at the top of this draft.
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Old 02-25-2014   #2
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Default Re: Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

Good read but it's the same old same old. You either love Clowney and the possibilities or you don't. If I'm taking a guy #1 that has warts, as do all the perspective #1's right now, I'm taking this guy. I know others disagree but it is what it is.
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Old 02-25-2014   #3
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Default Re: Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

I met a guy once who played against L.T. and he told me Taylor was relentless, never let up on a single play, but so would Clowney if he was high on Coke on Sunday afternoons.
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Old 02-25-2014   #4
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Default Re: Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

Peter King is media. Bill Polian has little bit of experience in the NFL and he says Clowney is the clear #1. Next hurdles are the psychological tests results and field drills at his pro day. But on his tape, Clowney is the #1.

Mike Zimmer, Vikings HC and 14 year defensive coordinator told Sanders, "You guys [on NFL Network] talk about Clowney if you want to... just leave him on the board when I'm picking."


Bill Polian's most NFL ready prospects

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Odell Beckham. Jr.
Jadeveon Clowney
Aaron Donald
Marquise Lee

Last edited by Playoffs; 02-25-2014 at 04:57 PM.
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Old 02-25-2014   #5
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Default Re: Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

Doesn't he seem like a possible Mario Williams to anyone else? Athletic specimen, half a motor?
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Old 02-25-2014   #6
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Default Re: Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

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Doesn't he seem like a possible Mario Williams to anyone else? Athletic specimen, half a motor?
I don't care, if he produces like Mario.

It would be an issue if I had to choose between Clowney, or Watt. But we're talking about adding Clowney to Watt.
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Old 02-25-2014   #7
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Default Re: Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

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Doesn't he seem like a possible Mario Williams to anyone else? Athletic specimen, half a motor?
To me he's Jevon Kearse without the motor.
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Old 02-25-2014   #8
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Default Re: Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

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Doesn't he seem like a possible Mario Williams to anyone else? Athletic specimen, half a motor?
I still think Mario was a decent #1 selection.

If he hadn't been so banged up we would of gotten more out of him. The injury issue is one of the big concerns with ey.
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Old 02-25-2014   #9
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Default Re: Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

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Doesn't he seem like a possible Mario Williams to anyone else? Athletic specimen, half a motor?
Can you imagine if we had Mario with year 2+ Watt?
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Old 02-25-2014   #10
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Default Re: Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

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Can you imagine if we had Mario with year 2+ Watt?
Mario Williams was frustrating to watch, because you always knew, he could be so much better and should be dominating. Sure, he would look good next to Watt, who wouldn`t. And yes, I also still believe he was the right pick back then.

But I wouldn`t want to take Clowney if he turns into Mario Williams. And I am not even sure, he will ever be as good as Mario. We have absolutely no QB, our RT sucks and we are missing an OLB, that can get to the QB. If we are not in love with any of the QBs, trade down. You can pick up Mack, Robinson or Matthews with the 5th pick easily, probably you get one of them with the 8th.

Clowney just has too many question marks.
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Old 02-25-2014   #11
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Default Re: Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

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If we are not in love with any of the QBs, trade down.
Do you see anyone in this draft special enough to trade up for?


I don't. I can't imagine anyone getting in love with any player in this draft. None worth giving up an extra 1st round pick anyway. We don't need 1 team to fall in love with any one player. We need 2 teams to fall in love with the same player.
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Old 02-25-2014   #12
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Default Re: Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

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Do you see anyone in this draft special enough to trade up for?


I don't. I can't imagine anyone getting in love with any player in this draft. None worth giving up an extra 1st round pick anyway. We don't need 1 team to fall in love with any one player. We need 2 teams to fall in love with the same player.
Clowney.

Robinson maybe.

Depends on what price we put on the pick.
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Old 02-25-2014   #13
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Default Re: Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

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Originally Posted by LikeMike View Post
Mario Williams was frustrating to watch, because you always knew, he could be so much better and should be dominating. Sure, he would look good next to Watt, who wouldn`t. And yes, I also still believe he was the right pick back then.

But I wouldn`t want to take Clowney if he turns into Mario Williams. And I am not even sure, he will ever be as good as Mario. We have absolutely no QB, our RT sucks and we are missing an OLB, that can get to the QB. If we are not in love with any of the QBs, trade down. You can pick up Mack, Robinson or Matthews with the 5th pick easily, probably you get one of them with the 8th.

Clowney just has too many question marks.
The future is just that way, you know, it's kinda uncertain.
But like Mayoc said the Texans are looking for a QB in this Draft to "fall in love with", and if they don't they are left with the decision to still draft a QB with their 1.1 who they "kinda like", or use the pick on a position player like Clowney or maybe Greg Robinson, Auburn OT.
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Old 02-25-2014   #14
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Default Re: Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

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I met a guy once who played against L.T. and he told me Taylor was relentless, never let up on a single play, but so would Clowney if he was high on Coke on Sunday afternoons.
Draft Clowney and get him a crack hookup. BAM!!!!! Problem solved.
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Old 02-26-2014   #15
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Default Re: Peter King The Clowney Conundrum

Current Penn State HC, former Vanderbilt HC James Franklin...

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“He’s a once-in-a-lifetime talent,’’ Franklin said in his office at the Penn State football facility. “Although people are going to look at the film and say it’s a risk, it may be a risk worth taking.”

That’s the rub: “may be.” You take a guy that high, you want it to be “will be.”

Said Franklin: “I coached in the ACC when Julius Peppers was at North Carolina, so in a lot of ways I was thinking there was similarities between him and Clowney. With Peppers, we always felt like you were better off running at him, not away. He was so athletic, he could run you down. I remember two years ago, we took the same approach with Clowney. We said we’re going to try to get him to rush up the field and then get a guard or somebody to kick him out and then that would be a great plan. I’ll tell you what: He destroyed us. Physically destroyed us. Running at him, running away from him.

“Teams would try to take him out of the game by tempo and try to wear him down physically, playing fast, which you saw early this year. I don’t think there’s any doubt that he was probably the most game-planned against player in the country, from that perspective. And I think he’s unbelievably gifted.”
http://mmqb.si.com/2014/02/25/jadeve...wrence-taylor/
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